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Barlow speaks on protecting water at the University of Wisconsin

On March 10, Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow spoke about ‘protecting water for people and the planet’ at the University of Wisconsin-Stout.

The Eau Claire Leader Telegram reports, “Barlow was one of the keynote speakers at the fifth annual Red Cedar Watershed Conference. A record 400 people were in attendance, including state and local government leaders, environmental officials, farmers and educators.” The newspaper adds, “In the U.S. presidential elections, the issue needs to be the water crisis, said Barlow, the national chairwoman of the Council of Canadians and winner of numerous environmental awards. …Globalization and trade agreements can impact water rights and usage, said Barlow, adding that citizens must question every policy and its impact on water.”

And it notes, “Barlow said the solution to the global water crisis lies in four core principles:

• Water is a human right: As clean water becomes more valuable and poverty increases, fewer people will be able to afford their water bills and will be forced to use polluted water.

• Water is a public trust: It belongs to the people and future generations.

• Water has rights as well: Watersheds, forests and wetlands must be protected.

• Water will teach us to live together: As the Earth’s population increases, people must learn to coexist.”

Earlier this week, the Dunn County News reported, “The annual Red Cedar Watershed Conference Thursday, Mach 10, at UW-Stout will bring together professionals, educators and activists from around the region to discuss ways to improve water quality. …The watershed conference, at the Memorial Student Center, is in its fifth year.” That article also noted that keynote speakers would include, “Maude Barlow, National Chairperson of the Council of Canadians and senior adviser on water to the United Nations. She will present ‘Blue Future, Protecting Water for People and the Planet Forever’ from 3 to 4 p.m.”

In Oct. 2010, Barlow spoke about water protection at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire’s Zorn Arena. And in April 2013, Barlow spoke on the importance of defending the Great Lakes at a public event in Milwaukee. Between 2013 and 2015, the Council of Canadians campaigned against a plan by Indiana-based Calumet Specialty Products to build a $25 million oil shipping terminal on the western tip of Lake Superior in Superior, Wisconsin. In April 2015, Calumet withdrew its applications for the dock project. The terminal would have been able to load a barge or tanker with up to 110,000 barrels of heavy crude oil every four days.

To read the full article in the Leader Telegram, please click here.

Photo: Barlow at UW-Stout. Twitter photo by Leader-Telegram reporter Pam Powers.